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Sickbay - How to solve the problem of Jessa

Posted Nov. 27, 2023, 1:01 a.m. by Lieutenant Aurra Talisse (Chief Medical Officer) (D Grisham)

Posted by Lieutenant Junior Grade Brenner “Bren” Satis (Doctor/specialty in neuroscience) in Sickbay - How to solve the problem of Jessa

Posted by Lieutenant Aurra Talisse (Chief Medical Officer) in Sickbay - How to solve the problem of Jessa

Posted by Lieutenant Aurra Talisse (Chief Medical Officer) in Sickbay - How to solve the problem of Jessa
Posted by… suppressed (6) by the Post Ghost! 👻
The CMO had been in surgery most of the day, but everything had gone well. The patients were resting in a recovery area of medical and she expected at least one of them to be released that evening. Divesting herself of the personal protection scrubs and cap, she left the surgical suite. Headed for her office and a replicated cup of coffee, she noticed Bren on one of the terminals updating patient charts.

Gritting her teeth, she made herself walk over to him. “I’d like to see you in my office as soon as possible.” Not waiting for his response, Aurra kept walking, heading for that caffeine boost.

—Talisse

bump

Bren had felt himself in an uneasy limbo over the last few days, doing his best to adapt to his new assignment, unsure of just how long he’d be here. Staffing requirements aboard the Atlantis had often left him covering night shifts when Aurra was off duty, but that sort of détente could only last so long. And as he watched her walk back to her office, order given without waiting for a response, he knew the phase of tense avoidance had ended.

It was best he didn’t keep her waiting. He closed out the chart he was updating and followed Aurra into her office. Assuming a pose of deference was the most logical choice at this time, he neither took a seat, nor sought his own caffeine boost from the replicator, but stood at ease and waited.

Satis, MO

OOC: Sorry to make you wait, Charley. The doctor has me on three new meds for my migraines and this week has been difficult.

IC: Aurra sat at her desk and watched as Bren entered the office. She couldn’t help but wish they were on better terms because when they had been friends it had all been so comfortable. Taking in a long breath, she finally got to the point. “I want to talk to you about Jessa.” Here, she motioned to the chair in front of her desk. Expecting the conversation to be lengthy, it wasn’t in good form to make him stand throughout it.

So it was business that had called Bren into Aurra’s office. The realist in Bren knew that was a good sign and so he took the offered seat and waited for the CMO to continue.

“I’ve only treated her once—well, that might be a stretch.” She sipped her coffee. “We didn’t hit it off, she and I, but I noticed when you treated her she was more open to what you had to say and to the treatment you advised. So, I’d like to pick your brain about the best way to deal with her. She has been a threat in one way or another, to the people on this ship since she arrived. I’d like to find a way to neutralize her power so the crew can return to their jobs instead of babysitting a pre-teen.”

Was there a compliment in there? Bren felt the edge of his mouth turn up slightly before returning his expression to one of professional neutrality.

Relaxing back into her chair, Aurra looked unemotionally across the desk. “Thoughts?”

—Talisse

“My initial assessment is that there are two parallel avenues of treatment needed for Jessa to transition from soldier to adolescent, one more direct than the other. During my examination I discovered that she had been administered a narcotic. From what I could gather she calls this her “battle drug” and is most likely administered through the armor she wears when threatened or in combat. As any narcotic it is addictive and has significant symptoms when one is going through withdrawal. If her access to this drug is restricted and her symptoms are treated, it should only be a matter of time before she physically recovers.”

Aurra nodded and waited for him to continue.

Bren paused. He knew nothing he described about narcotics and their effects would be unknown to Aurra. It was the second part that was contained more gray areas, a place he’d always believed himself to be more comfortable in than his former friend.

“The second avenue of treatment is therapeutic. My knowledge of Jessa’s background is limited, but during our time together I sensed a number of conflicting emotions warring within her. More than I might expect from your average pre-teen. She feels a need for control, but it seems to come as much from an external indoctrination of expected behavior as it does from an internal need to exert her own autonomy. She’s scared, but feels nothing but negative emotions toward herself when she feels fear. It’s as if the emotion is a sign of weakness. She strives toward a perfection that you and I know is unachievable by any humanoid, but she doesn’t realize its unattainability, so this provides an additional sense of guilt, weakness, or simply lack of control. A direct approach puts up her defenses. She needs to feel she’s had her say in her treatment.”

Satis, MO

She stood and placed her body behind the chair, leaning her elbows on it and clasping her hands together. “Okay, your assessment of the girl sounds on point. The way she spouts all the religious/political dogma, its obvious its what she believes, but it seems to resemble brainwashing or indoctrination from what I’ve observed. What information do you have on the nanites in her blood?” They needed to find a way to neutralize the battle drug if they were going to have any kind of chance to take Jessa into custody without damaging the ship or the crew.

“Do you think we can separate her from the impenetrable suit she wears?”

—Talisse

Aurra was keeping their conversation on track and he sensed little from her other than professional curiosity and competence. She’d always had the ability to compartmentalize when necessary.

“Any understanding of her nanites are limited. Jessa’s claims are that they are extremely efficient in helping to repair any injuries or damage to her health that she may receive. The suit…I don’t know. I haven’t had the opportunity to study it in any detail. A permanent attachment doesn’t make sense, though. It’s an advanced technology. At the least I would assume there would be a mechanism to prevent the technology from falling into enemy hands if a soldier falls in battle. Similarly, what if a person outfitted with the suit were to turn on their superior? It’s possible that the military elite within her society feel their mental control of their people would prevent that sort of outcome, but I would think they’d have a Plan B, just in case. I know I’m simply thinking out loud, but it wouldn’t make sense for there to not be a way to separate person from suit.”

Satis, MO

That made a lot of sense. “Did you get a chance to examine the point that activates her suit?”

Aurra didn’t know why she was so put off by the young girl, but it was a stroke of luck that Bren had bonded with her to some extent. She chewed at her bottom lip as she tried to work out how they might find the answers they were looking for. “We don’t want to do anything that would put her into ‘battle mode’, but I’d give a lot to get a chance to examine that suit.”

As she looked across the desk to where he sat, her face showed sudden signs of pain. It only lasted for three or four seconds but it would be noticed by her co-worker.

—Talisse


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